Second trimester of pregnancy – what to expect and what you have to do during this period

Second trimester

* Last Updated 19.03.2020

The second trimester is the best period of pregnancy for most women. During this period most expectant mothers experience relief from morning sickness, emotions stabilize, can find out the baby’s sex and you can feel the baby’s movements. The baby now has functioning organs, nerves and muscles. Now the baby grows the most and you will begin to feel that pregnancy is more “real”. In the second trimester of pregnancy baby’s first tiny hairs are starting to sprout, babies get eyelashes and eyebrows, baby’s skin is now covered in lanugo. By the end of the first trimester their digestive system if fully formed. Baby’s ears and eyes are moving into their correct positions and they start to smell, see and hear. Now the baby’s brain regulating the heartbeat.

Even if during the second trimester you will have some relief from the first one, there are new big changes for your body. And while your belly continues to grow and levels of pregnancy hormones rise, you will experience new situations, conditions and symptoms. They are normal and temporary.


second trimester of pregnancy


The most common symptoms for the second trimester of pregnancy are:


Sensitive gums and some bleeding – it is because of the hormone changes, but in this case you need to see your dentist to prevent more problems in the future.

Mild swelling of the ankles and feet – to reduce puffiness, it is good to be active, lift your legs when you are not moving and avoid long periods of standing.

– Leg cramps – it is not necessary to have, but usually, start in the second trimester. I didn’t have any till the end of my pregnancy.

– Dizziness – usually caused by lower blood pressure due in part to all the extra blood your body is pumping. When I have these situations, I just start to drink more water and eat some chocolate.

– Varicose veins – if you didn’t have them from before should go away after the pregnancy.

– Hemorrhoids – also should go away after pregnancy, if you didn’t have them from before like me. Ask your doctor what ointment you can use.

– Weight gain – in this trimester usually expected mothers start to gain pregnancy weight, because of appetite increase. In my case, this started at the end of the second month.

– Backache – it is normal because of the weight gain. You can use pillows and positions which are comfortable for you.

– Breast enlargement – your breasts will still grow as they prepare to feed your baby. Wearing a good support bra will make you feel more comfortable.

– Hair growth – usually pregnancy hormones boost hair growth. I remember that during my pregnancy my hair was amazing.

– Headache – in this case you need to get plenty of rest. Deep breathing or meditations also can help.

– Heartburn – to relieve heartburn you can try to eat more frequent and small meals and to avoid spicy and greasy meals.

– Constipation – for constipation can help more fiber and drink extra fluids. And physical activities can help too.

During the second trimester your sleeping will change. Usually doctors recommended sleeping on your left side throughout pregnancy. The reason is that the person’s liver is located in the abdomen on the right side. This is one of the most important organs in the body and we want to keep pressure off the liver so it can function optimally. For me, it was not possible to sleep on my left side during all these months, but I did it as much as I could. And it is fine! The doctors recommend not to sleep on your back after the fourth month also for health reasons. But don’t worry about this, you will not feel comfortable in this position and you will get a hard kick from your baby if he or she doesn’t feel good with your position. You can use different types of pillows to support you while sleep – C, U-shaped.

Also, very important for you is to keep active. Doctors agree that staying active in pregnancy is good for you and your baby. This way you will keep yourself healthy during your pregnancy and you can prepare your body for the challenges of labor. But before beginning, any pregnancy exercises get the green light from your midwife or your doctor. Usually the best time to start with exercises is when you discover you are pregnant, but the second-best time to start is now. I didn’t have time for pregnancy exercises during the first trimester because I still was at work and I was exhausted. During the second and third trimester when I was mostly at home, I didn’t do a lot of exercises. But I spent a lot of time out and walking (a lot). I didn’t use a car, bus оr metro. And I felt really good this way.

The second trimester is the best one (in my opinion and experience). The reason is that you will feel a bit better from the first one. It is better from the third one too, because then your belly will be bigger and heavy. During the second trimester you will have to prepare for routine monitoring, schedule a level two ultrasound including 3D and 4D ultrasounds, and/or prenatal genetic screening. For all this, you will speak with your doctor, of course.


Vitamin D3

You can start with the preparation for the baby!

For me it was very pleasant and interesting – to shop for some maternity clothes, to choose the baby’s name and to prepare some things for the baby. Now is a good time for you to think where you want to give birth. I would also suggest to check out prenatal classes or prenatal lecturesthere are many free and very useful courses. You can create your must-have listsnewborn must have products, hospital bag, and baby first aid kit.

I did it this way and everything happened very easily and without stress to me. I was trying to enjoy my pregnancy and my free time. I stopped working after the fourth month. I did what I liked – I was resting, reading books, walking every day, going out with friends, preparing lists of the most necessary things for the baby. With purchases from the lists I started at the end of the sixth month. And at the end of the eighth month, we had bought everything.

Finally, I would like to say that in order to have a nice and normal second trimester, as well as pregnancy, it is good to eat well, stay active and rest as much as you can.

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